Hop Aboard @CarolePRoman’s Spaceship and Travel to #Mars! #bookreview #kidlit


if-you-were-me-and-lived-on-mars

 

Title: If You Were Me and Lived on…Mars (If You Were Me and Lived in…) (Volume 21)

Author: Carole P. Roman (Author), Mateya Arkova (Illustrator)

Genre: Children’s Picture Books, Astronomy, Space

 

Book Blurb:

Join Carole P. Roman when she blasts off to colonize the planet Mars, in the newest book of her informative series. Learn about how life would be living on the Red Planet. Travel to Olympus Mons, the largest volcano in the solar system. Look into the sky and watch Phobos and Deimos, Mars’ two moons. Discover what you would wear, and how the seasons change. See Mars through the eyes of an adventurous youngster like you and understand what life is like in a trip of a lifetime. Don’t forget to look at the other books in the series so that you can be an armchair traveler.

 

My Review:

Ever wonder what life is like on Mars? Step aboard Carole P. Roman’s spaceship and travel to Mars. You’ll learn all sorts of fascinating facts including:

 

Mars and Earth have approximately the same amount of land. Earth appears larger but much of its surface is water.

 

The air on Mars is much thinner and has less oxygen so you’d have to wear a special suit when outside on Mars.

 

Mars has two moons orbiting around it. Phobos is the larger one and Deimos is smaller, both named after Greek gods.

 

Mars has summer and winter, just like Earth.

 

A year on Mars lasts 1.88 Earth years and a day on Mars is a little more than 24 hours.

 

This is such a fantastic book on astronomy and space. Perfect for children who are fascinated by space. There’s a lot of detail packed into this little book and it makes a great tool for both homeschool teachers and classroom teachers. Roman stays consistent with her series and shares facts children would be interested in while capturing children’s imaginations with bright, colorful illustrations. I’d recommend reading this aloud and having children ask questions.

 

Another brilliant book by one of my favorite children’s book authors!

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/If-You-Were-Lived-Mars/dp/1540869725

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33941064-if-you-were-me-and-lived-on-mars?ac=1&from_search=true

 

cpr

 

Author Biography:

Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012 for her first book, award winning author Carole P. Roman started writing as a dare from one of her sons. Using an imaginary game she played with her grandson as a base, Captain No Beard was born. “Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate’s Life” has not only been named to Kirkus Best of 2012, it received the Star of Exceptional Merit, and won the Pinnacle Award for 2012. “Pepper Parrot’s Problem with Patience” Book 2 in the series, received 5 Stars from The ForeWord Review The Clarion Review. Strangers on the High Seas has won second place in the Rebecca’s Reads Choice Awards 2013. It has followed with six more books to the series. This year, Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis was named to Kirkus Best 2015. The entire cultural non-fiction series If You Were Me and Lived in… was named Best Series by Shelf Unbound. She has begun work on two new series that will be released in early 2016.

 

Motivated by her love of yoga, Roman has written a book that not only teaches four poses, but shows how easy and accessible yoga can be.

 

 

Her new non-fiction series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…” combines her teaching past with her love of exploration and interest in the world around us. The debut book in the series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…Mexico” has won the Pinnacle Award for Best in Children’s Non Fiction 2012. France, South Korea, and Norway. Rebecca’s Reads has given If You Were Me and Lived in…Norway an honorable mention in the 2013 Choice Awards. If You Were Me and lived in …France won second place. ForeWord Review has nominated If You Were Me and Lived in…France for best in children’s non fiction literature 2013. They will be followed with Kenya, Turkey, India, and Australia. She plans to do Portugal, Greece, and Argentina next year.

 

 

Writing for children has opened up a whole second act for her. While she is still working in her family business, this has enabled her to share her sense of humor as well as love for history and culture with the audience she adores. Roman lives on Long Island with her husband and near her children.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://caroleproman.com/  

 

Blog http://caroleproman.blogspot.ca/  

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CarolePRomanAwardWinningAuthorAndBooks  

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/caroleproman  

 

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/caroleproman/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Spirit Well by @cyallowitz is a #Fantasy #FridayReads Gem! #bookreview #ASMSG


the-spirit-well-cover

 

Title: Legends of Windemere: The Spirit Well

Author: Charles E. Yallowitz

Genre: Sword & Sorcery, Epic Fantasy

 

Book Blurb:

Born from the light and darkness, Dariana can no longer avoid her fate.

 

The final corrupted temple stands between the champions and Baron Kernaghan having their great battle. Only one problem: the Compass Key refuses to work with Dariana, who long ago wiped all memories of the Spirit Well from her mind. Now, they are forced to follow a trail of clues that Dariana’s former self left behind centuries ago. It is a path that will lead the champions into a part of their friend’s past that could tear them all apart.

 

Will the bonds of friendship be stronger than the call of blood?

 

My Review:

All is not as it appears in Windemere and the Champions are in for their greatest challenge. The final temple stands between them and the Baron. But before they get on their way, Nyx is at the receiving end of endless questions and accusations from her family concerning her relationship with her beloved. Are they married? When will they get married? Nyx’s temper flares and she returns to her lover’s arms for comfort.

 

The Champions band together and head to Rodillen then to the Spirit Well. The only problem is that Dariana’s memories are wiped clean (mysterious) and cannot remember where this final temple is located. When she asks the Mayor about it, she finds herself in a bind. Or is it all part of her plan?

 

Dariana’s father is the Baron and while she knows more than she lets on, her actions propel the Champions into a time where memories are fabricated and Luke is separated from the rest of the Champions. Is he dead? No one knows for sure. It takes the Champions working together as one to unravel the truth.

 

This book twisted my emotions and took me on an adventure I didn’t see coming. While Yallowitz drops clues along the way, when something big happens (won’t reveal what… you’ll have to read to find out), it was like the floor drops away. It was so shocking that I almost quit reading it. Almost. My curiosity kept me riveted to the story and the ending was even better than I could’ve hoped.

 

For all you fantasy romance readers out there, you’re in for a treat. Yallowitz adds the perfect blend of romance, intrigue, action and drama. I didn’t know the author was a romantic at heart. Well done!

 

If you’re a fan of The Two Towers, you’ll really love this book. It’s a standalone in the Windemere series with plenty of shocking twists and turns.

 

A must read for epic fantasy readers and if magic is more your thing, you’ll really love The Spirit Well.

 

My Rating:  4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01N2RQMA9/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33286494-the-spirit-well

 

charles-yallowitz

 

Author Biography:

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn’t working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. ‘Legends of Windemere’ is his first series, but it certainly won’t be his last.

 

Social Media Links:

Legends of Windemere Blog
Twitter
Facebook
Pinterest
Tumblr
LinkedIn
Google+
Goodreads
Charles E. Yallowitz Website

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

“Scorching, Delicious Read” Vampire CEO: Part 3 by @erin_bedford #books #bookreview


vampire-ceo-part-3

 

Title: Vampire CEO: Part 3 (Vampire CEO Series)

Author: Erin Bedford

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Witches

 

Book Blurb:

This is part three in a three part series.

 

Even witch’s can bite…

 

With her mother sick Abigail finds herself back where she started, at the head of the New Orleans Coven. The new position and the pressure put on her by her fellow sisters is making Abigail wish for her human life and a certain vampire.

 

Sebastian has been quiet since she quit. No word, no note. It makes her wonder if he ever cared about her at all or if it was just her blood to begin with.

 

Things get heated when her coven pushes her to do more magic than she is comfortable with until she gets a distressing call from Midnight that forces her to confront Sebastian. Will she figure out her place in New Orleans or will it all end in pain?

 

My Review:

Of all the gin joints…

 

No matter how much Abigail tries to get away from Sebastian, he pops up everywhere. I guess that happens when you’re a 400-year-old vampire. Only this time, he’s setting fire to her body and nothing’s going to quench it except release.

 

But her relationship with Sebastian is put on the back-burner with her mother’s illness worsening. The coven asks Abigail to take her rightful place as high priestess and she can no longer run away from her destiny. Witches are convinced Abigail can heal her mother but can she? The dark voodoo power within her takes life; is there a way to reverse it? And what about Sebastian? Can a witch and vampire be together or are Abigail and Sebastian doomed?

 

WOW! What a fantastic completion to this series! Part 3 is sizzling hot with enough angst to keep you turning the page. Bedford rakes Abigail over the coals and it’s delicious to read Abigail’s journey from fear to acceptance. We all have a path to follow and love is never easy. The ending made my heart constrict and I’d love to read more in this paranormal world. Bedford grabs a hold of the reader and doesn’t let go!

 

Scorching hot romance, conflicted characters, fast-moving plot and a quick read! Pick up the full serial today and dive into the magical world of New Orleans.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Vampire-CEO-Part-ebook/dp/B01N6QU7JJ/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33897875-vampire-ceo

 

Author Biography:

Erin Bedford is USA TODAY Bestselling author. She works as a computer programmer by day and is a hobby hoarder. She enjoys playing RPG games alongside her husband as well as inventing nonsensical games for her daughter’s amusement. Erin lives in the Omaha Nebraska Region and dreams of one day moving where the word snow is nonexistent.

Creating fantastical worlds have always been a secret passion of hers and she couldn’t imagine writing any story without some kind of lovey-dovey or smexy goodness in it.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.erinbedford.com/

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/erinrbedford

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/erin_bedford

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Road to Transition by Bree Record @pagepublishing #bookreview #trans #LGBTQ


the-road-to-transition

Title: The Road to Transition

Author: Bree Record

Genre: Memoir, Gender Transition Surgery, LGBTQ

 

Book Blurb:

The Road to Transition is my story, which was forty days in the telling and fifty-five years in the living; that is, if you can call existing living. It still amazes me how much you can lose without actually realizing it. Each lost piece takes on the worth exceeding that of the finest of golden treasures. I know because in the telling of this story, I discovered that.

 

The forty days are those that led up to my gender confirmation surgery. It was a time with as many ups and downs and gut-wrenching twists as the wildest of roller coasters. I tried to remain true to my journal, though at times I was sick and dizzy. I endeavored to bring to you the accurate portrait of what lay down The Road to Transition.

 

My Review:

The Road to Transition is the story of Bree and her compelling journey leading up to her gender confirmation surgery. Imagine the heartache, confusion, grief, anger, frustration, identity crisis, knowing you are female living in a male body. Then, and only then, are you able to understand what Bree went through in one day.

 

I am not transgendered nor have I ever been mistaken for a man, but from the moment I started reading Bree’s memoir, my mind fused with hers and felt all the turmoil and anxiety she went through. My heart broke for her so many times, I wanted to reach through my Kindle and give her a hug, tell her it was all going to be okay.

 

Bree takes us from the time she was born (Sarah) through her identity crisis (Steve) through the incredible process leading up to her surgery. Told in journal format, she holds nothing back. With clarity of mind, she describes in vivid detail the agony of her journey. Yet, she does it without blame. She doesn’t rail against her parents, family members, society or human prejudice. She’s the narrator in this memoir, sharing her experiences truthfully and the result is inspiring. To go through such darkness and grief only has result: reborn into the light.

 

This moving memoir will touch you in an emotional way and I highly recommend it! This is not just a memoir for the LGBTQ community but for all of humanity. Thank you, Bree, for being so brave in baring all so that we may understand what you went through and to show compassion to others who are going through it.

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M3MP78P

 

Barnes and Noble https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/?ean=9781684092390

 

iTunes https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/isbn9781684092406

 

Kobo https://store.kobobooks.com/search?Query=9781684092406

 

Google Play https://play.google.com/store/search?q=9781684092406&c=books

 

Indigo (Canada) https://www.chapters.indigo.ca/en-ca/books/the-road-to-transition/9781684092390-item.html

 

Publisher http://www.pagepublishing.com/books/?book=the-road-to-transition

 

Social Media Links:

Press Release http://www.prweb.com/releases/2016/10/prweb13783449.htm

 

Contact the Publisher for all correspondence: https://www.pagepublishing.com

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

100 Insanely Good Recipes for Clean Food Made Fresh @ChefSamTalbot #bookreview #diabetes


100-real

 

Title: 100% Real: 100 Insanely Good Recipes for Clean Food Made Fresh

Author: Sam Talbot

Genre: Health, Mind & Body, Cooking, Food & Wine

 

Book Blurb:

Celebrated chef and healthy-living expert Sam Talbot shows us how to make wildly delicious, nourishing food–using healthy, wholesome ingredients.

 

Bursting with 100 whole-food recipes and down-to-earth advice about clean eating, this cookbook proves that eating 100% real food is an enjoyable choice you can make every day. Chef Sam Talbot’s nourishing dishes are overflowing with natural flavor and free of processed ingredients, questionable additives, sweeteners, or preservatives.

 

Packed with vibrant personality and more than 150 photos, this cookbook is a real-world guide to un-junking what we feed ourselves and our children. Sam explains how to find seasonal ingredients and offers tips on stocking your pantry with game changing ingredients, like coconut oil and chickpea flour.

 

Forget fat-free, low sodium, zero trans-fat, and the like–the hottest new food claim is not needing a claim at all. Eat. Real. Food.

 

My Review:

It’s time to get back to real food and Chef Sam Talbot has created an essential guidebook to help both professional and home cooks get 100% real. I was drawn to this book by the title first and then by Chef Sam’s story. He’s a Type 1 Diabetic and a fan-favorite from Bravo’s Top Chef. He knows food and knows what it means to pay close attention to what he puts on the plate. His philosophy is simple: strike a balance between what’s healthy for you and what you enjoy eating.

 

His five steps to keeping it real reaffirmed to me I’m 100% real. Check it out:

  • Eat plants and greens for real
  • Cook at home at least three times a week
  • Don’t eat fabricated or super processed food
  • Focus on FFP (Fat, Fiber and Protein Super Trio)
  • Find the fun in food; don’t be a judgemental jerk

 

Chef Sam then gives you some helpful tips on revamping your pantry, fridge and freezer. I related to this part because it wasn’t until I married a Chef (who’s now retired) that I understood how crucial it was to have a fully stocked pantry, including nuts, herbs and grains. This allows creativity in your food prep and you’re not having to go to the store every day. Herbs can turn an ordinary dish into the sublime.

 

The rest of his book is chockful of delicious, healthy recipes for every meal. I’ve tried a few and here are my favorites:

 

  • Ripe banana and dark chocolate pancakes with maple syrup and coconut cream
  • White bean and cilantro hummus
  • Mini falafel pocket sandwiches
  • Savory corn cake fritters
  • Sweet and spicy pork on coconut rice
  • Apples foster with coconut and whisky caramel

 

I highly recommend this cookbook, even if you don’t have diabetes in your family. It’s time to get real about food and support our local farmers. It’s a win-win all around!

 

Disclaimer: I received an ARC from Oxmoor House (Time Inc. Books) via Netgalley in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  5 +stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/100-Real-Insanely-Recipes-Clean-ebook/dp/B01NBKBUZG

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31423318-100-real

 

Author Biography:

Sam Talbot is a chef, author, philanthropist and TV personality. A fan-favorite on Bravo’s Top Chef, Talbot was the founding Executive Chef of the Surf Lodge in Montauk, NY and Imperial No. Nine at the Mondrian SoHo. He is the chef and owner of Pretty Southern restaurant in Brooklyn, NY and a co-founder of Beyond Type 1, a non-profit organization focusing on the diabetes community.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http://www.samtalbot.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ChefSamTalbot?lang=en

Publisher Facebook Time Inc. Books Facebook

Publisher Twitter Time Inc. Books Twitter

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Tales of the Faie by Diana L. Wicker @FeyronTales is a Fantastic #FridayReads! #SFF #YA


tales-of-the-faie

 

Title: Tales of the Faie: The Beginning of Days (Tales from Feyron – The Ripples of Power)

Author: Diana L. Wicker

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy, Fantasy

 

Book Blurb:

Every culture has fairy tales, the tales of legend and lore that children hear at bedtime that teach lessons of history and morality, the little bits of truth that keep a culture whole. The Realm of Feyron is no different. Join the youth as they listen to the tales of the beginning days of the Faie.

 

My Review:

“Every culture has fairy takes, the tales of legend and lore that children hear at bedtime…”

 

After completing her bestselling young adult fantasy series, Diana L. Wicker takes us back in time, to the beginning of the Realm of Feyron. Told through the Storyteller as campfire tales, we learn how each of the six Guardians came to be as well as some mythical occurrences (Tree of Life, the Mists, Crystal Tears and the Crystal Barge). While each story is short, their impact is huge.

 

I really enjoyed this collection of tales from the mythical world of Feyron. Fairy tales, no matter where you reside (real or imagined), are meant to teach morality and culture. Wicker takes the world she’s already created and delves into the Beginning. Her talent for immersing the reader in her world with rich and descriptive language is second to none. Like fantasy authors of the past, she transports you to Feyron and you find yourself wanting to stick around.

 

Now, if you haven’t read any of the Feyron series, this is a great place to start. You get a chance to hear the tales directly from the Storyteller and be introduced to the Realm of Feyron. I highly recommend it!

 

If you’re like me and a fan of all things fantasy, pick up this collection today. You’ll savor each story, like a delicious indulgence.

 

Disclaimer: I received an e-copy from the author in the hopes that I’d review it.

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Tales-Faie-Beginning-Feyron-Ripples-ebook/dp/B01M5G1V1W

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32789386-tales-of-the-faie

 

Diana Wicker

 

Author Biography:

Diana is an indie author living in the balmy climate of the US south with her family and fur babies (a dog, a cat, and a cantankerous rabbit). She enjoys reading, sewing, cosplay, being a studio mom for dance school, and RPG games. (She grew up with the old school paper/pencil style of gaming, but has transitioned happily to the highly interactive world of video games.) And, as if she had more time to spare, she has invested in Asian ball jointed dolls to customize into characters from Feyron.

 

The idea for Feyron started with a map, a place for her daughter to tell stories and live out storytelling role-playing adventures with her friends. The lore grew around the map, for every world needs lore if you are going to “live” there. The idea for a series, Tales from Feyron, grew out of the lore, for if you’re going to invent a world, you may as well play there too. The stories are continuing to grow through the various historical ages of Feyron and have just started to ripple outwards to the Worlds Beyond touched by magic. Legacy of Mist and Shadow is the first tale to venture to one of those worlds and has been awarded the BRAG Medallion by Indie BRAG. http://www.bragmedallion.com/about

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.talesfromfeyron.com/

Twitter https://twitter.com/FeyronTales

Tumblr http://feyrontales.tumblr.com/

Pinterest http://pinterest.com/talesfromfeyron

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/1424535612

Google+ https://plus.google.com/110082079094253485379

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Strong is the New Pretty by @ktparkerphoto #bookreview #books #photography


strong-is-the-new-pretty

 

Title: Strong Is the New Pretty: A Celebration of Girls Being Themselves

Author: Kate T. Parker

Genre: Arts & Photography, Nonfiction (Adult)

 

Book Blurb:

Girls being fearless. Girls being silly. Girls being wild, stubborn, and proud. Girls whose faces are smeared with dirt and lit up with joy. So simple and yet so powerful, Strong Is the New Pretty celebrates, through more than 175 memorable photographs, the strength and spirit of girls being 100% themselves.

 

Real beauty isn’t about being a certain size, acting a certain way, wearing the right clothes, or having your hair done (or even brushed). Real beauty is about being your authentic self and owning it. Kate T. Parker is a professional photographer who finds the real beauty in girls, capturing it for all the world to see in candid and arresting images.

 

A celebration, a catalog of spirit in words and smiles, an affirmation of the fact that it’s what’s inside you that counts, Strong Is the New Pretty conveys a powerful message for every girl, for every mother and father of a girl, for every coach and mentor and teacher, for everyone in the village that it takes to raise a strong and self-confident person.

 

My Review:

Strong is the New Pretty is girl power exemplified. Girls from all ages, races, sexuality and walks of life talking about strength, power and what it means to be pretty. In it are over 175 photographs and quotes meant to showcase natural girls doing what they love to do: be themselves.

 

I loved this book! I wished I had this book when I was growing up, especially in my teens. I was bullied at school for being not rail-thin and marching to my own drum. I sure could’ve used this book to boost up my self-esteem.

 

Professional photographer Kate T. Parker envisioned this book project as a way to unite girls and inspire them to be who they are, no matter what. Her eye for capturing real beauty in these girls is breath-taking. Well done, Parker!

 

I highly recommend this book to every girl, woman, parent, grandparent and friend! Its profound message needs to be taught to girls around the world. It certainly inspired me and I have already ordered my copy.

 

Watch out world, strong is the new pretty!

 

Disclaimer: I received an ARC from Workman Publishing Company and Netgalley in the hopes I’d review it.

 

Favorite Quote:

“Being mentally strong is ten times harder than being physically strong. Mental stamina does not come from the muscles or from training. It comes from the heart…and from the mind. Calling on my heart is far more difficult than calling on my muscles.”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Strong-New-Pretty-Celebration-Themselves/dp/1523500689

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30754027-strong-is-the-new-pretty

 

Author Biography:

KATE T. PARKER is a mother, wife, former collegiate soccer player, Ironman, and professional photographer who shoots both fine art projects and commercial work for clients across North America. Her Strong Is the New Pretty photo series has led to collaborations with brands like Athleta, Kellogg’s, Oxygen, and Girls on the Run. The project has also inspired Kate to launch a philanthropic arm of Strong Is the New Pretty, partnering with organizations that invest in girls’ health and education. When she’s not photographing, she can be found coaching her daughters’ soccer teams. She lives with her family in Atlanta, Georgia.

 

Social Media Links:

Website https://www.katetparker.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/katetparkerphotography

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/katetparker/

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/katetparker/

Twitter https://twitter.com/ktparkerphoto

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

“I’m a Junkie and Can’t Get Enough” Vampire CEO Part 2 by @Erin_Bedford #paranormalromance


vampire-ceo-part-two

 

Title: Vampire CEO: Part 2 (Vampire CEO Series)

Author: Erin Bedford

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Witches

 

Book Blurb:

This is part two of a three-part series.

 

The witch is out of the bag now…

 

With a vampire boss and an overwhelming attraction to him, Abigail’s new job has become more than she can handle. The parts of herself that she thought were gone have resurfaced and now not even she knows what will happen next.

 

Sebastian is becoming more to her than just a boss and she has to decide will she stay with him or go? The smarter option would be to leave but when has she ever been smart?

 

Part three coming February 13th!

 

My Review:

I’m a junkie for this series. After reading book one, I went through withdrawal symptoms waiting for part two to come out. I tried to be patient but you know how it is when you become so attached to a book series, patience goes out the window. I fantasized various scenarios (some outlandish, most super-sexy) and when I finally read part two (in one sitting), Erin Bedford blew my freakin’ mind!

 

Part two picks up the morning after where part one leaves off. Abigail is in her apartment reliving what happened the night before. She knows she needs to tell her mother what happened before the High Priestess hears it from someone else. But she might be too late as her mother is gravely ill. Grief-stricken and not feeling up to facing her sex-on-a-stick boss, Sebastian, she calls in sick. Several HOT encounters between Sebastian (on the couch, in the office, in a darkened alleyway) only reaffirms Abigail’s decision to find another job.

 

Meanwhile her witchy friend, Rebecca, gets drunk and Abigail gets a call from the bartender asking for help. Even though it’s 3 am, she’s gotta go and rescue several beefy bouncers and bartenders from a single petite female who happens to be a powerful witch. (Best scene ever!) Abbie to the rescue and on her way out the door, she asks about a job at the club. A waitressing job is better than working so closely with Sebastian.

 

Abigail’s backsliding in part one has opened the door to the darkness inside her and she’s finding it harder and harder to resist. Sebastian feeds her desire and if she loses total control, there won’t be anything left of Abigail, much less those she loves. But when she goes to the waitressing interview, all reason leaves her.

 

WOW! I loved this part even more than part one. Filled with a lot more smexy interaction between Abigail and Sebastian (no, I won’t give you any spoilers), the stakes couldn’t be higher for Abigail. Her mother’s illness, Sebastian’s coolness then boiling hot behavior leaves her bewildered, not to mention giving into temptation. A witch and a vampire? What happens when he sinks his fangs into her?

 

Gimme more, Erin Bedford! Counting the days until part three comes out.

 

Favorite Character: Abigail. I understood her pain as she’s dealing with a lot. If her mother dies, will she ascend as High Priestess? Even though there’s some in the coven who despise her? And what about Sebastian and her dark fantasies about him sinking his fangs into her while they have sex? Mmm, deliciously dark and seductive.

 

Favorite Quote: “Then you have to keep your mouth and fangs to yourself!” she jumped up from the couch, not minding the blanket that fell to the floor.

 

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Vampire-CEO-Part-ebook/dp/B01MS7BDA7

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33897874-vampire-ceo

 

Author Biography:

Erin Bedford is USA TODAY Bestselling author. She works as a computer programmer by day and is a hobby hoarder. She enjoys playing RPG games alongside her husband as well as inventing nonsensical games for her daughter’s amusement. Erin lives in the Omaha Nebraska Region and dreams of one day moving where the word snow is nonexistent.

Creating fantastical worlds have always been a secret passion of hers and she couldn’t imagine writing any story without some kind of lovey-dovey or smexy goodness in it.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.erinbedford.com/

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/erinrbedford

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/erin_bedford

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Beauty of the Fall by @marcellor is Profound #bookreview #books #TuesdayBookBlog


the-beauty-of-the-fall

Title: The Beauty of the Fall: A Novel

Author: Rich Marcello

Genre: Literary Fiction, Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

A TECHNOLOGY EXECUTIVE CHARTS A HIGH-RISK, UNCONVENTIONAL PATH WHILE GRIEVING THE LOSS OF HIS SON

 

Dan Underlight, a divorced, workaholic technology executive, suffers lingering grief over the death of his ten-year-old son, Zack. When Dan’s longtime friend and boss fires Dan from RadioRadio, the company that he helped create, he crashes and isolates himself.

 

Willow, a poet and domestic violence survivor, helps Dan regain his footing. With her support, Dan ventures on a pilgrimage of sorts, visiting Fortune 500 companies to flesh out a software start-up idea. He then recruits three former RadioRadio colleagues and starts Conversationworks, a company he believes will be at the vanguard of social change.

 

Guided by Dan’s leadership, Conversationworks enjoys some early successes, but its existence is soon threatened on multiple fronts. Will Dan survive the ensuing corporate battles and realize the potential of his company? Or will he be defeated by his enemies and consumed by his grief?

 

My Review:

A book that resonated with me on a personal level a number of times.  For what was the first 25% I simply loved the book. It was wonderful and I thought it was just going to be a smooth sailing book about a guy who got knocked down but ended up happy back on his feet.  There is much more to this book than meets the eye.

 

The author weaves a lengthy tale about a troubled soul named Dan.  The character suffers loss after loss after loss after loss and gets about as far down as Job could before finding his path.  But I also believe there is a deeper message in this book.

 

This is an incredibly well written book that teaches people the desperate need for the passing of the ERA and focuses a bright spotlight on the horror that is domestic violence.  This book shows a fictional way that both of these critical issues can be helped.  if only this book could be taken as a guide for modern day America then we could have positive movement in passing the ERA and ending the blight of cowardly men who are so gutless that they raise their hand against a woman.

 

Personally, this book struck home with two passages.  The first trifecta of loss that Dan suffers – his divorce, the death of his son and his loss of work…When I was a very young man I lost my Father, the loss of my school year and the loss of my love.  This kind of loss isn’t easily conceived if someone hasn’t faced it personally.

 

Further, there was a scene where Dan defended a woman being beaten by beating the coward who beat her and at that time the woman then defended her coward boyfriend.  The same thing happened to me last century when I witnessed a man punch his girlfriend and I decked him and was then struck with a purse for ‘hurting her boyfriend’.  This gave me quite a kinship to Dan.

 

This is a hard read but it carries a deep and powerful message and should be read by everyone, everywhere.

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Beauty-Fall-Novel-Rich-Marcello-ebook/dp/B01MFCTYYW/

 

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-beauty-of-the-fall-rich-marcello/1125005129?ean=2940157107680

 

iBooks https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1169546426

 

Buy Direct from Author https://secure.mybookorders.com/order/rich-marcello

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32711997-the-beauty-of-the-fall

 

Author Biography:

Rich is a poet, a songwriter and musician, a creative writing teacher at Seven Bridges’ Writer Collaborative, and the author of three novels, The Color of Home, The Big Wide Calm, and The Beauty of the Fall. Previously, he enjoyed a successful career as a technology executive, managing several multi-billion dollar businesses for Fortune 500 companies.

 

The Color of Home was published in 2013 by Langdon Street Press, and melds together honest generative dialogue, poetic sensory detail, and “unforgettable characters who seem to know the complete song catalog of Lennon or Cohen.” The Big Wide Calm was published in 2014, also by Langdon Street Press. The US Review of Books stated, “Marcello’s novel has a lot going for it. Well-written, thought-provoking, and filled with flawed characters, it meets all of the basic requirements of best-of-show in the literary fiction category.” The Beauty of the Fall will be published in 2016. Faulkner Award Winner Mark Spencer commented, “Few novels are as intelligent and relevant as The Beauty of the Fall. Almost none is as eloquent, compelling, heartbreaking, and ultimately, uplifting.”

 

As anyone who has read Rich’s work can tell you, his books deal with life’s big questions: love, loss, creativity, community, aging, self-discovery. His novels are rich with characters and ideas, crafted by a natural storyteller, with the eye and the ear of a poet.

 

For Rich, writing and art making is about connection, or as he says, about making a difference to a least one other person in the world, something he has clearly achieved many times over, both as an artist, a mentor, and a teacher.

 

Rich lives in Massachusetts on a lake with his family and two Newfoundlands, Ani and Shaman. He is currently working on his fourth novel, The Latecomers.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.richmarcello.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/rich.marcello.3

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/marcellor

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/rich-marcello-4198739

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/rich.marcello/

Soundcloud https://soundcloud.com/marcellorich

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

“Intoxicating and Swoon-Worthy” The Highlander’s English Woman by @RuthACasie #romance


thehighlandersenglishwoman300-1

 

Title: The Highlander’s English Woman

Author: Ruth A. Casie

Genre: Historical Fantasy Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Laura Reynolds is in love with her long-time friend, Jamie Maxwell Collins. She adores his playful sense of humor, caring nature as well as his strong sense of family and honor.

Jamie lives across the border in Scotland. Outwardly carefree, he hides a dark secret. He can’t involve Laura in this deception. He can’t give her hope for a future together.

Laura stumbles upon Jamie’s secret. In her heart of hearts she knows Jamie is innocent. Their relationship in tatters and with no hope of reconciliation, she plays a deadly game to exonerate Jamie, she agrees to a political marriage. She has no idea the entire game has been orchestrated by her future husband, Jamie’s greatest enemy.

 

My Review:

Betrayal. Deception. Love. Power. Something is amiss and The Maxwell calls on his most trusted warrior, Jamie Maxwell Collins, to root out the perpetrators before The Maxwell Ghost strikes again.

 

In the continuation of the short story, The Maxwell Ghost, Ruth A. Casie tells the complete story of Laura, Jamie and the ghost(s) haunting the castle of The Maxwell. If you read The Maxwell Ghost, you’ll be familiar with the first part of this book. But please don’t skip the first half of the story. Casie adds intricate detail to the original story and trust me, it’s worth a re-read. It’ll suck you into Laura’s and Jamie’s romance as well as what else is happening.

 

Back to the story…

 

Laura agrees to accompany Jamie, on her mother’s behalf, to help the restless spirits before their time is up. She, like her mother and sister, have certain “gifts” and she knows she can right the wrong. But all is not as it appears to be and it may be Laura the hidden villain is after, not The Maxwell.

 

Jamie knows he must end things with Laura because his enemy is vicious and would think nothing of torturing Jamie through Laura. So, he makes a clean break and shatters Laura’s heart, although his pain is much worse than hers. He goes undercover to uncover the plot against The Maxwell and even goes so far as to “pretend” to be in love with one of women associated with the plot to overthrow The Maxwell.

 

Laura, in an effort to get over Jamie, befriends an old friend who falls in love with her. He proposes marriage and seeing no other choice, aligns herself into a political marriage. Laura is playing a deadly game and all those she loves may pay the consequences. Can Jamie save her or is all lost?

 

I loved this historical romance and while it was written years after The Guardian’s Witch, this prequel’s continuity is exceptional. Casie blends the supernatural with historically accurate romance with precision and flair. The plot has several twists and surprises (I won’t reveal any here) which I wasn’t expecting. The monk scene is priceless!

 

If you’re a fan of historical medieval romance set in both Scotland and England with dashes of the supernatural, pick up this book right now! It’s a gem and I highly recommend it! Can’t wait for the next installment in the Stelton Legacy by Ruth A. Casie!

 

This is a standalone, as is The Guardian’s Witch, but I recommend you read this first.

 

Favorite Character: Laura. Strong, independent and full of passion, Laura knows what she wants and goes after it. She’s in love with her childhood friend, Jamie, and when he pushes her away for another woman, her pain is acute.

 

Favorite Quote:

He kissed her fingertips. “I thought I lost you forever.”

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon/Kindle: https://amzn.com/B01LXYHNGS

 

Amazon Print: http://a.co/am0MfIq

 

iBook: http://apple.co/2eddatE

 

BN: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-highlanders-english-woman-ruth-a-casie/1125365584?ean=2940157490539

 

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/the-highlander-s-english-woman

 

Ruth A Casie close

 

Author Biography:

RUTH A. CASIE is a USA Today bestselling author of swashbuckling action-adventure time-travel romance about strong empowered women and the men who deserve them, endearing flaws and all. Her Druid Knight novels have both finaled in the NJRW Golden Leaf contest. The Guardian’s Witch, part of the Stelton Legacy series was a Reader’s Crown Finalist. Ruth also writes contemporary romance in the Havenport series with enough action to keep you turning pages. Ruth lives in New Jersey with her husband, three empty bedrooms and a growing number of incomplete counted cross-stitch projects. Before she started writing time travel romance, she was a speech therapist, international bank product and marketing manager, but her favorite job is the one she’s doing now—writing time travel romance. For more information, please visit www.RuthACasie.com or visit her on Facebook, @RuthACasie, Twitter, @RuthACasie, or Pinterest RuthACasie.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http:// www.ruthacasie.com

 

Personal Blog:  http://www.ruthacasie.blogspot.com

 

Google+ https://plus.google.com/+RuthSeitelman

 

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/RuthACasie

 

FB Author Page: http://www.facebook.com/RuthACasie

 

LinkedIn: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ruth-seitelman/6/6b7/964

 

Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/ruthacasie/

 

Goodreads: http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/4792909.Ruth_A_Casie

 

Reviewed by: Mrs N

Paper Love by @Aubreywynne51 is a Delightful Sweet #Romance! #bookreview


paper-love

 

Title: Paper Love (A Chicago Christmas Book 2)

Author: Aubrey Wynne

Genre: Holiday Fiction, Holiday Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Growing up in a Papua New Guinea mission, Joss Palmateer is a gentle soul with a unique view of life. Still adjusting to a new home in the U.S and the sudden loss of her mother, love is the last thing on her mind.

 

Sexy physical therapist, Ben Montgomery, meets his sister’s friend and the sparks fly. He takes it as a challenge when she ignores his advances, but it’s her extraordinary inner beauty that captures his heart.

 

With the help of a stray homing pigeon and an old origami legend, Ben sets an unwavering course of romance to win her love.

 

My Review:

Still grieving the loss of her mother, Joss Palmateer has no interest in going out and meeting people but her best friend, Becky, keeps asking her to come to Ben’s (Becky’s brother) Friday Single Parties. Joss mentions it on a whim before dinner to her sister (who wants to go) so they decide to attend. Once at the party, shy Joss meets Ben and the attraction is immediate. He asks her out but she politely says no. She’s still getting over the betrayal of her ex-boyfriend.

 

 

Ben Montgomery takes one look into Joss’ chocolate brown eyes and is smitten. Her no is a challenge for him and he does everything he can to win her heart, thanks to the help of a lost pigeon named Charlie. He’s charming, outgoing and it’s not until he shows an insecure part of himself that Joss lets down the walls protecting her heart.

 

 

A sweet romance from Aubrey Wynne and just what I needed after a hard week. From the moment I read the first sentence, I had warm-fuzzy thoughts fill me. See, I’m a total romantic and Paper Love is one of those feel-good romances that makes the world fade away. I loved the banter between Joss and Ben, Ben and Becky, not to mention between Ben and Charlie the Pigeon. While this is short story, the main characters were fully developed.

 

It was refreshing to read a romance where there wasn’t any billionaires, serious angst and so forth. This is just a sweet romance, taking place during the holiday season, with real people (like you and me) trying to figure out what they want out of life and falling in love. Brilliant! I swooned at Ben’s romantic side. I cried a little at Joss’ grief and struggling to move on past her mother’s death. The ending moved me so much I had to text my husband and tell him I love him.

 

1-click this book right now (and the whole series). You’re in for a treat!

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author (via Netgalley) in the hopes I’d review it.

 

 

Favorite Character: It was hard to choose between Joss and Ben, as I loved them both, but I could relate with Joss more than Ben. Her caution when it comes to love and men in general made total sense, given her previous boyfriend (jerk that he is). I found myself nodding my head in agreement with her, most of the time, and the urge to hug her at certain moments in the book was overwhelming.

 

Favorite Quote: “Twinkle, twinkle, little star, how I wonder what you are…”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Paper-Love-Chicago-Christmas-Book-ebook/dp/B01M9CCE5O/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31821220-paper-love

 

Aubrey Wynne

 

Author Biography:

Bestselling and award-winning author Aubrey Wynne resides in the Midwest with her husband, dogs, horses, mule and barn cats. She is an elementary teacher by trade, champion of children and animals by conscience, and author by night. Obsessions include history, travel, trailriding and all things Christmas. Her short stories, Merry Christmas, Henry and Pete’s Mighty Purty Privies have won Readers Choice Awards and Dante’s Gift received the 2016 Golden Quill, Aspen Gold, and Heart of Excellence award, as well as being a Maggie and Aspen Gold finalist. Besides her Chicago Christmas novellas, Aubrey will release “A Vintage Romance” series inspired by tales of her stepfather, who served for the British Air Force in WWII. The stories will be set in the 40s & 50s. Her medieval fantasy series will launch in 2017 with Rolf’s Quest.

 

Social Media Links:

Website https://aubreywynneauthor.com/

Blog https://aubreywynneauthor.com/blog/

Twitter https://twitter.com/Aubreywynne51

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Something (Wisteria #1) by @creepyshelby is #Horror at its Best! #bookreview #books


something

 

Title: Something (Wisteria #1)

Author: Shelby Lamb

Genre: New Adult, Horror

 

Book Blurb:

“I will find true love and everything will be okay. I will find true love and everything will be okay…” she chanted.

 

They say be careful what you read. Something is wrong. Something is very wrong. It can happen to anyone. This is just four teenagers’ story. Aubrey Golding hates her face, her body, and is devastated after Nathan Silva leaves her. Alone, suicidal, and desperate for love, she discovers a book called Something and unknowingly links others to a dark and terrifying curse that is beginning to consume her. Nathan is glad to be moving on with someone new and can hardly believe what is happening now. Wild child and amateur porn star, Bella Broadhurst, loves bullying that “emo whore” Aubrey with the other girls, but mostly she loves partying, hookups, and plain ol’ drama when terror arises. And Kendra Coke is just a new teen mother working on a delicate relationship when things start becoming utterly bizarre. Chilling sleep disturbances and figures hiding in the corners of their rooms are just warnings of what is to come. Be careful what you read, they say. Tread carefully….

 

My Review:

A dark, disturbing tale dealing everything from suicide, drugs, occult, bullying, love and romance, teenage motherhood and more. Graphic scenes, so be warned. I’d recommend it for 16+ readers.

 

What happens when one woman (Aubrey) stumbles across a cursed book titled Something? She reads it and passes it along to others. Something is out there and Something is out to get you. Be careful what you read…

 

Something (Wisteria #1) is one of those books where I hated every character. From Aubrey who’s suicidal and cuts herself to Nathan who’s a self-obsessed jerk to Bella who bullies Aubrey to poor Kendra who’s struggling with motherhood… I didn’t find a redeeming quality in any of them. But then, that’s the point, I think. Lamb’s shifted alarming societal issues to the characteristics of the four teenagers and given them life.

 

Extremely well-written and almost gothic in nature, Something (Wisteria #1) is horror at its best. While Lamb borrows heavily from the movie, The Ring, she puts her own spin on it. Reading could kill you? You bet! Horror doesn’t get any scarier than books out to murder people.

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Something-Wisteria-1-Shelby-Lamb/dp/0988131226

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/31565981-something

 

Author Biography:

Shelby Lamb is an author who loves exploring the weird and unsettling. She writes fiction from her own personal life experiences and from the depths of her imagination and the inspiration around her. Something (Wisteria 1) is her debut work. She lives in Toronto, Canada.

 

Social Media Links:

Website/Blog  http://creepyshelby.blogspot.ca/

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/creepy.shelby/

Twitter https://twitter.com/creepyshelby

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Edna and Luna by @GPwriterartist Celebrates Women with Humor and Grace #bookreview


edna-luna-ebook-cov_1

 

Title: Edna and Luna

Author: Gleah Powers

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Metaphysical Fiction

 

Book Blurb:

Set in the American Southwest, ‘Edna & Luna’ is the story of two women: a lonely, recently widowed eccentric, and a much younger new age healer. Facing old age and a hysterectomy, Edna, at 70, reminisces and ruminates about her losses as she makes unsuccessful attempts to start a new life. She tries to befriend her hairdresser, her gardener, and a man she meets at a senior dance who makes sexual advances in the swimming pool. Luna, at 35, ridiculed since childhood for her unorthodox gift of healing, has left a violent husband before moving to a local trailer park. Despite Edna’s initial suspicions that Luna is both out of her mind and after her money, their relationship becomes an odyssey filled with unpredictable depths and discoveries for both women.

 

My Review:

Two women, Edna and Luna, forge an unlikely friendship and traverse through life’s ups and downs. Edna is dealing with life in the Southwest as a widow and it’s much more difficult than even her country club friends realize. Luna is a mid-thirties new age healer dealing with her own form of isolation. A chance meeting at the grocery store changes their lives forever.

 

Two strong, independent women are front and center in Edna and Luna, which delights me. No hair-pulling, no back-stabbing, just two women trying to figure out this crazy thing called life. Told in dual POV, each chapter unveils a snapshot of Edna’s or Luna’s life. From the mundane (grocery shopping for one) to the poignant (miscarriage), the reader befriends both women at the same time. The metaphysical sub-plot added a mystique to the story which gave it an almost ethereal backdrop.

 

Women’s Fiction is not just about dating and romance, it’s about women and journeying through life. Edna and Luna made me laugh, cry, nod my head in agreement and form a bond with the characters. Powers is truly gifted in sharing the female experience (pregnancy to miscarriage to menopause) with humor and grace.

 

A must read!

 

Disclaimer: I received a copy from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

Favorite Character: Edna. She’s a quirky character with definite beliefs and morals. Upon first meeting Luna, she thinks Luna’s a nutcase but as time goes on and the Universe keeps putting them together, Edna realizes Luna may just be the friend she’s always needed. Dealing with living as a widow is a challenge for Edna and I loved her shock when her handyman tries to kiss her. She’s one in a million and I wanted to reach into the book and hug her.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Edna-Luna-Gleah-Powers-ebook/dp/B01L2KOAF2

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30847563-edna-and-luna

 

Author Biography:

Born in Chicago and raised and educated in the American Southwest, Gleah Powers has led a life by turns grounded and nomadic-a perfect preparation for discovering in herself the voices of Edna and Luna. In her early teens, she lived with her grandmother in Phoenix. At 18, she traveled with the production of Michelangelo Antonioni’s Zabriskie Point. (Antonioni, suffering from insomnia, liked that Gleah was a worthy opponent at cards. She even taught him to play gin rummy.) Thereafter she studied art in Mexico City and at Cal Arts in Los Angeles; moved to New York where she worked as an actor, model, bartender and administrative assistant to a wealthy philanthropist; and became an explorer and teacher of alternative therapies. These adventures will be detailed in the memoir she is currently writing. Edna and Luna is her first novel. Visit her website at: www.gleahpowers.com

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/gleah.powers

Twitter https://twitter.com/GPwriterartist

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/gleahpowers

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

War and Remembrance by Herman Wouk is a Superbly Woven Tale #bookreview #books


war-and-remembrance

 

Title: War and Remembrance

Author: Herman Wouk

Genre: Historical Fiction, Classical Literature

 

Book Blurb:

Herman Wouk’s sweeping epic of World War II, which begins with The Winds of War and continues here in War and Remembrance, stands as the crowning achievement of one of America’s most celebrated storytellers. Like no other books about the war, Wouk’s spellbinding narrative captures the tide of global events – and all the drama, romance, heroism, and tragedy of World War II – as it immerses us in the lives of a single American family drawn into the very center of the war’s maelstrom.

 

My Review:

What a superbly woven tale.  Authors need to review the great works of Wouk when they are trying to tie together a vast number of story lines and a vast number of characters.  I first came to know this story in the incredible mini series that ran in 1988.  I then got this book and the story just captivates as it tells the story of the Henry and Jastrow families.  The ‘history of World War 2’ intro sections can drag a touch but is done in a way to fill in to the non-historical reader the basic facts of the War during each period.  I love the book and highly recommend it as a super read and as a tool for authors who wish to weave complicated stories.  This is how you do it.

 

 

My Rating:  4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/War-Remembrance-Herman-Wouk-ebook/dp/B0033UT24E

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/42986.War_and_Remembrance?ac=1&from_search=true

 

Author Biography:

Herman Wouk earned his living as a scriptwriter for Fred Allen before serving in World War II. His career as a novelist spans nearly six decades and has brought him resounding international acclaim. He lives in Palm Springs, California.

 

Reviewed by: Mr. N

Meretneith by Barbara Ann Cerda @bobann #bookreview #FridayReads #eroticromance


meretneith

 

Title: Meretneith

Author: Barbara Ann Cerda

Genre: Erotic Fantasy, Erotic Romance, MFM Romance

 

Book Blurb:

This is an erotic thriller about a 5,000-year-old female warrior known among her kind as the Protectress. Meretneith covertly leads the remnants of a civilization destroyed by catastrophic land shifts. Her highly evolved culture thrived long before humans walked upright to become an emotionally sentient race. As tribal leader, Meretneith roamed the ancient deserts of Kemet. The beauty now travels the world as a business leader and death dealer.

 

The novel chronicles, in character retrospections, the events that shaped the developing relationships between Meretneith’s tribe and humanity. As tribal law, she is mated to her brother Ptah from birth. Together they become both stewards of human civilization and guardians against the oldest tribe, the Hyksos. Meretneith’s tribe called them the Old Ones. Winning their freedom from this tribe long before the advent of human kind, they war to maintain that freedom.

 

Superior in strength and longevity, they lay hidden within human civilizations to secretly lead and protect.

 

Amassing great wealth the tribe shifts global economies and civilizations’ religious and moral self-perceptions. Threatened by their old enemy Meretneith’s ancestors devised a madman’s scheme. Because of the increased influence of the Hyksos, humanity’s movements toward events of self-destruction must be altered. The scheme incorporates an ambitious global economic initiative. The results will be the creation of offspring that heralds a genetically altered and stronger human race.

 

Enter the Chicago global financier Saul Ben Izrael who finds it hard at first to accept his new heart’s passions and legacy. As a subterfuge, Saul is recruited to head a global alliance. The promised completion of the project will create a realignment of sovereigns’ wealth. A larger than life urban economic warrior, he is drawn like a magnate to the possibilities of becoming a global economic power. This new project also offers him the love of the incredible beauty Meretneith, head of the largest organization of wealth in the world.

 

He is a stunning middle-aged giant of a man, who watched his life change in an instant when the beautiful female warrior entered it. Disguised as a global leader she swept him into a world of which he knew nothing. Tribal warriors and leaders Meretneith and brother Ptah were beautiful and 5,000 years old. Born in the deserts of ancient Kemet they came to Chicago to claim as their own the wealth builder Saul Ben Izrael.

 

Unbeknownst to Saul he is the Chosen One come to lead and defend human kind and to join in the fight against the Old Ones. The three awaken to an indescribable passionate bond. The evolution of a new human kind and the love that seals that bargain paves a magnificent journey.

 

My Review:

The world is older than you might think and humanity is on a path to self-destruction. Prophesy states there is a Chosen One who will join forces with Tribal Warriors Meretneith and her brother, Ptah (Egyptian Goddess and God retrospectively) and defeat their enemies, known as the Old Ones.

 

Saul Ben Izrael is a financial god in his own right and when the wealthy Neith Foundation asks for his bid on the biggest financial project the world has ever witnessed, he can’t resist. From the moment he walks into the Neith Foundation and lays eyes on beautiful CEO Meret Neith, he’s under her spell. She invites him to meet her brother in London, England and he accepts, not knowing his life will forever be changed. He’s the Chosen One and Meretneith needs her brother’s help converting Saul before the Old Ones seek their revenge.

Seductive, alluring, heady are what spring to mind when reading this book. Meretneith combines Egyptian mythology with contemporary fantasy. From the first page, I was consumed with the intertwining storylines and erotic scenes. Cerda blends history with modern day beautifully so I could suspend belief while reading. While it dragged a bit in the beginning and middle, plot-wise, the vibrant characters more than made up for it. A very well-written first book in the series that piqued my interest in reading more.

 

This book is an erotic romance/fantasy and I recommend readers 18+ due to adult situations, menage sex scenes and relationships.

 

I received a copy from the author in the hopes that I’d review it.

 

Favorite Character: Meretneith. I’m a sucker for a kick-ass female protagonist and Meretneith is that and so much more. Seductive, powerful (she’s a goddess) and passionate, Meretneith is all the female attributes I admire in one. It’s no wonder men worship her.

 

Favorite Quote: “Today she would prove to her tribe and all who would oppose her, that she would be the supreme tribal leader. Every sinew, every nerve had been prepared since birth for this moment. Countless hours in combat training, herbs and grains all prepared specifically to create her powerful body. She longed for the rising of Re and for the battle stage in the deserts of Kemet to begin.”

 

My Rating:  4 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Meretneith-Barbara-Ann-Cerda-ebook/dp/B00IBTDDME/ref=asap_bc?ie=UTF8

 

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/meretneith-barbara-ann-cerda/1118733932?ean=2940148158998

 

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/ca/en/ebook/meretneith

 

Publisher (all of Cerda’s books are on sale here) https://clublighthousepublishing.com/mvc1/authordisplay/Details?id=Barbara%20Ann%20Cerda

 

Author Biography:

Barbara Ann Cerda is a Project Manager and Business Writer, featured author in the E-magazines, Surface Earth and Money for Lunch, News and Opinions. From the United States, she has been part of the writing community for over ten years. She loves to write articles, create simple content to explain complex subjects, organize and revamp articles and help other business writers. She says that in learning communication and coaching skills through authoring.  It helps in becoming the constant evolutionist.  No matter the genre, she enjoys the instant gratification of improving and being productive online and in creating seductive writing.

 

Born in Austin Texas and growing up in Chicago Illinois has refined her life’s experiences and broaden her writing disciplines. The writer was educated in biology and economics at Northeastern Illinois University and Chicago City Colleges. Although her majors do not specify journalism or writing it is punctuated by higher-level course work in speech writing, business prose and lyrical critique.

 

Barbara Ann Cerda is at the award winning short story author of “Bobann”, winner of the Best 2004 and 2005 Short Story for actor Rutger Hauer’s foundation Starfish.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://theprotectress.com/

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Meretneith-304899699549001/?ref=aymt_homepage_panel

Twitter https://twitter.com/bobann

Instagram https://www.instagram.com/bobann28/

LinkedIn http://www.linkedin.com/in/bobann

Skype barbara.cerda4

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

1-Click Vampire CEO Part 1 by @Erin_Bedford Right Now! #99cents #PNR #bookreview


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Title: Vampire CEO, Part 1

Author: Erin Bedford

Genre: Paranormal Romance, Vampires, Witches

 

Book Blurb:

This is part one of a three part series.

 

Wait until he gets a taste of her.

 

Tossed out by her coven, Abigail has to brave the human world and get a real job. With no skills outside of potions and spells, she magics her way out of unemployment and into the executive suite of Midnight Pharmaceutical.

 

But something strange is going on at Midnight. While her boss is the very definition of dark and mysterious, he makes her witchy sense tingle with his odd hours and the string of women leaving his office every day…

 

She’ll find out what’s happening at Midnight; if her boss doesn’t take a bite out of her first.

 

Part two coming out January 30th!

 

My Review:

“Wait until he gets a taste of her…”

 

Abigail is the daughter of the high priestess of the New Orleans coven and has just been thrown out for bad behavior (we learn the real reason later). Forced to find her own way in the world, she does it like the humans do and gets a job. With no actual experience or references to speak of, she buys an itty-bitty spell to get a job as a midnight secretary for a pharmaceutical company. Midnight secretary? Yup, they work round the clock and before she can blink, Abigail is the brand-new night secretary for the CEO, Sebastian.

 

From the moment she starts working for Sebastian, the air and Abigail’s libido is electrified. His voice is silk, his eyes the deepest sapphire blue and his air of confidence reduces Abigail to a pile of goo. But she senses there’s more to Sebastian than just “rock my world until I scream” … is it just his alpha maleness or something more sinister? And what’s with all the women coming and going at all hours? But when she discovers his secret, will he change her or just fire her?

 

A brand-new series from one of my favorite new authors, Vampire CEO Part 1 is intoxicating, smexy and reminded me of an adult version of Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Dark, mysterious vampire? Check. Tortured witch try to make it on her own? Check. Swoon-worthy alpha male? Check. Strong yet conflicted heroine? Double-check.

 

Vampire CEO moves fast with action, conflict, seduction, family issues and characters I felt an instant connection with. This is singular POV (Abigail) and while I would’ve loved to hear Sebastian’s POV from time to time, I love being inside Abigail’s world. The ending plunged me off a steep cliff but luckily, I’m counting the days until Part 2 arrives in my reader. A must-read and I highly recommend it!

 

Favorite Quote: “Never fear me, Abigail. I have no wish to harm you.” His words brushed against the side of her neck causing her to jump in her seat slightly. No sooner had she felt him behind her then he was gone. As his office door closed behind him, his next words made her shiver. “Not unless you asked me to.”

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now for only 99 cents:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Secretary-Vampire-Romance-Novel-ebook/dp/B01MG287DQ

 

Author Biography:

Erin Bedford is USA TODAY Bestselling author. She works as a computer programmer by day and is a hobby hoarder. She enjoys playing RPG games alongside her husband as well as inventing nonsensical games for her daughter’s amusement. Erin lives in the Omaha Nebraska Region and dreams of one day moving where the word snow is nonexistent.

Creating fantastical worlds have always been a secret passion of hers and she couldn’t imagine writing any story without some kind of lovey-dovey or smexy goodness in it.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.erinbedford.com/

Facebook http://www.facebook.com/erinrbedford

Twitter http://www.twitter.com/erin_bedford

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

¡HOLA! Let’s Learn Spanish by @judyruth10 is Fun and Delightful! #bookreview #FridayReads


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Title: ¡HOLA! Let’s Learn Spanish: Visit New Places and Make New Friends

Author: Judy Martialay (Author and Illustrator)

Genre: Foreign Language, Children’s Books, Learn Spanish

 

Book Blurb:

¡HOLA! gives children 6-10 an early and fun start in learning Spanish. Parents can use it with their children, whether or not they know Spanish. Go to website http://www.polyglotkidz.com  and download the audio. Follow the book along with the audio to learn the pronunciation. Kids take an imaginary trip to Mexico where they meet Panchito the Mexican Jumping Bean. They follow his adventures while being drawn into the culture and learning Spanish. Activities follow to practice Spanish. They include a treasure hunt and a skit. Culture Corner give more ideas for practicing Spanish while learning more about Mexico, including the song for breaking a piñata. Children can follow directions for making a traditional Mexican Mask. Parents should go to Parents’ page on website for more advice on how to use the book.

 

My Review:

Learning a new language (no matter how old you are) can be tricky but in this book, Judy Martialay makes it fun to learn Spanish. Pete the Pilot, is our tour guide and his job is to fly kids around the world. He’s a friendly character and explains how kids love to do the same stuff as you or me. Along the way, we meet Panchito, the Mexican Jumping Bean. What unfolds is a delightful story of Panchito and what his life is like, as well as Mexican customs and traditions.

 

Each page is filled with adorable, colorful illustrations any child can relate to along with plenty of Spanish words to learn. Because it’s told in a story, it’s easy to learn the Spanish words. I found myself speaking Spanish before long and laughing.

 

While this book is geared for primary school-aged children (6-10), adults can pick up Spanish, too. Before long, the whole family will be speaking Spanish.

 

Martialay has a passion for teaching children foreign languages and it comes across in the book. I loved it and plan on buying the French one next. An excellent resource for teachers, parents, educators and even grandparents. A must own!

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/HOLA-Lets-Learn-Spanish-Friends-ebook/dp/B01C32FEWQ

Please download the audio version on the audio page at  https://polyglotkidz.com

 

Author Biography:

Hi, I’m Judy Martialay. I live in Sea Cliff, N.Y. with my husband; daughters are out of the nest and grown up. I have a baby granddaughter.

 

I have lots of interests; I am a guitar jammer, a painter, gardener, knitter, volunteer, cook, and am studying Japanese.

 

I retired from teaching foreign /world languages, and devoted ten years to the promotion of foreign language study as Co-Chair of the Public Advocacy Committee of the New York State Association of Foreign Language Teachers (NYSAFLT).

 

I wrote the book ¡HOLA! Let’s Learn Languages because I want every child to have the opportunity to learn a world language at an early age. This is the best time to start learning a language. Children’s brains are wired for learning languages. They have a better chance for acquiring native pronunciation, and they have ample time to become truly proficient in the language.

 

I want children and their parents to enjoy the experience of learning languages. It is an adventure into the soul of another world.

 

If your child continues study of a language, he or she will have a skill that will provide life-long benefits.

 

Social Media Links:

Website: http://polyglotkidz.com/

Blog http://polyglotkidz.com/judys_blog/

Twitter https://twitter.com/judyruth10

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/AuthorJudyMartialay/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Beast Within by @JacqBiggar Scared Mrs. N to Death! #bookreview #TuesdayBookBlog #mgtab


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Title: The Beast Within (Book 2 Mended Souls)

Author: Jacquie Biggar

Genre: Mystery/Suspense Thriller

 

Book Blurb:

She didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

 

Can two displaced angels save a woman from the clutches of a vicious psychopath?

 

When Julie Crenshaw is offered a news reporter’s job on beautiful Vancouver Island she didn’t expect to land in the crosshairs of a serial killer.

 

Connor O’Rourke has seen his share of human depravities during his fourteen years as a homicide detective, but is still sickened by the murderer terrorizing his island shores.

 

And threatening his key witness.

 

As the stakes rise, can two people get a second chance at love?

 

Or will a killer be the winner?

 

My Review:

The Beast Within is book two in the Mended Souls series and while I loved The Guardian (book one) for its paranormal romance elements, this one scared the crap out of me! Trust me, that’s a good thing. It’s a psychological thriller with paranormal elements that continues the story of newly-minted angels Mike and Lucas.

 

Julie, Mike’s widow, is trying to move past the loss of her husband when she discovers a foot on the beach. The reporter in her says it’s a serial killer but the last thing she needs is more publicity. But Detective Connor, annoyingly handsome and astute, won’t let her leave the crime scene until she gives her name. She does and he recognizes her immediately.

 

There’s a serial killer on the loose and he’s one sick man. The more Julie investigates it, the closer she get to the truth and the more attention she gets from the killer. Will Connor catch the killer before it’s too late or will the killer be victorious?

 

Biggar takes a story ripped from current British Columbia headlines and creates one of the scariest thrillers I’ve ever read. She delves into the mind of a serial killer and it’s spot-on. The twisted nature of his view on human life (especially Native women) brought the killer’s point of view front and center for the reader’s enjoyment.

 

But this is so much more than a psychological thriller. While Julie and Connor are hunting the serial killer, Angels Lucas and Mike have their own cat and mouse game playing out. Mike has taken the one thing that matters to Lucas captive (backstory in book one). Mike’s determined to make Lucas pay. Mike discovers his wife has feelings for Connor which only makes things worse. It’s not until Julie’s life is in danger, that these two angels must work together. A beautiful story of rage, redemption and forgiveness.

 

Biggar is one of my favorite romantic suspense authors. She ups her game in The Beast Within and it’s a must-read, in my view. Filled with complex storylines, intense emotional scenes, paranormal conflict and an unstoppable killer, The Beast Within would please any suspense/thriller reader. Biggar’s writing just gets better and better. Don’t delay, 1-click today.

 

I received an ARC from the author in the hopes I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

http://books2read.com/u/bpGqpl

 

Jacquie Biggar

 

Author Biography:

JACQUIE BIGGAR  is a USA Today bestselling author of Romantic Suspense who loves to write about tough, alpha males who know what they want, that is until they’re gob-smacked by heroines who are strong, contemporary women willing to show them what they really need is love. She is the author of the popular Wounded Hearts series and has just started a new series in paranormal suspense, Mended Souls.

 

She has been blessed with a long, happy marriage and enjoys writing romance novels that end with happily-ever-afters.

 

Jacquie lives in paradise along the west coast of Canada with her family and loves reading, writing, and flower gardening. She swears she can’t function without coffee, preferably at the beach with her sweetheart. 🙂

 

Free reads, excerpts, author news, and contests can be found on her web site:

http://jacqbiggar.com

 

You can follow her on at http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar , http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

 

Or email her via her web site. Jacquie lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and loves to hear from readers all over the world!

 

You can also join her street team on Facebook: Biggar’s Book Buddies

 

Or her exclusive Review Crew: https://jacqbiggar.com/join-my-review-crew/

 

And sign up for her newsletter-

http://eepurl.com/2MFvX

 

Social Media Links:

http://jacqbiggar.com

http://Facebook.com/jacqbiggar

http://Facebook.com/jacquiebiggar

Facebook Street Team:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1051448161572521/

http://Twitter.com/jacqbiggar

http://amazon.com/author/jacquiebiggar

https://www.goodreads.com/JacquieBiggar

http://Pinterest.com/jacqbiggar

https://plus.google.com/+JacquieBiggar

https://www.bookbub.com/authors/jacquie-biggar

http://Instagram.com/jacqbiggar

 

Newsletter- http://eepurl.com/2MFvX

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

If You Were Me and Lived In … Israel by @CarolePRoman #bookreview #IAN1 #FridayReads


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Title: If You Were Me and Lived in… Israel: A Child’s Introduction to Cultures Around the World (Volume 19)

Author: Carole P. Roman, Kelsea Wierenga (Illustrator)

Genre: Children’s Picture Books, Israel, Nonfiction

 

Book Blurb:

Join Carole P. Roman when she visits the exciting land of Israel in the newest book of her informative series. Learn about the varied customs and cultures. Travel to the Middle East to discover what you would eat and do for fun. See the land through the eyes of a youngster like you and understand what life is like in this exciting place. Don’t forget to look at the other books in the series so that you can be an armchair world traveler.

 

My Review:

Award Winning Author Carole P. Roman is back with her 19th installment in her If You Were Me and Lived In… series, a fun, interactive way to showcase cultures from around the world to children.  On this trip, she’s exploring Israel.

 

Israel is a country in the Middle East and there’ve been people inhabiting it for thousands of years. It has a fascinating history and is the Holy Land to four religions (Christianity, Judaism, Islam and Baha’i).

 

Some interesting facts from the book:

Many residents shop in the open-air market (shouk) instead of a shopping mall. It’s like a farmer’s market or a street fair where there are booths selling everything you could possibly want or need.

 

Millions of tourists visit the Dead Sea every year. It is the lowest spot on earth (1371 feet below sea level) and has healing qualities due to the high salt content.

 

Purim is one of the big holidays in Israel. It honors and celebrates Queen Esther, who saved her people long ago. Baskets of treats and candy are given out to friends and family while, at the same time, charity is given to those less fortunate.

 

Roman does a magnificent job immersing the reader in all facets of what it means to be a child of Israel without dealing with the strife and violence that permeates Israel’ citizens. Children learn valuable information about life in Israel and get a feel for its history. I personally loved the story about why they read from right to left.

 

The illustrations are both photographs and hand-drawn which adds to their beauty. Bright, colorful and eye-catching, they draw the reader in.

 

I highly recommend this book (and the whole series). A great resource for parents, teachers and educators.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/You-Were-Lived-Israel-Introduction/dp/1537261991

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32921829-if-you-were-me-and-lived-in-israel

 

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Author Biography:

Named to Kirkus Reviews’ Best of 2012 for her first book, award winning author Carole P. Roman started writing as a dare from one of her sons. Using an imaginary game she played with her grandson as a base, Captain No Beard was born. “Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate’s Life” has not only been named to Kirkus Best of 2012, it received the Star of Exceptional Merit, and won the Pinnacle Award for 2012. “Pepper Parrot’s Problem with Patience” Book 2 in the series, received 5 Stars from The ForeWord Review The Clarion Review. Strangers on the High Seas has won second place in the Rebecca’s Reads Choice Awards 2013. It has followed with six more books to the series. This year, Captain No Beard and the Aurora Borealis was named to Kirkus Best 2015. The entire cultural non-fiction series If You Were Me and Lived in… was named Best Series by Shelf Unbound. She has begun work on two new series that will be released in early 2016.

 

Motivated by her love of yoga, Roman has written a book that not only teaches four poses, but shows how easy and accessible yoga can be.

 

 

Her new non-fiction series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…” combines her teaching past with her love of exploration and interest in the world around us. The debut book in the series, “If You Were Me and Lived in…Mexico” has won the Pinnacle Award for Best in Children’s Non Fiction 2012. France, South Korea, and Norway. Rebecca’s Reads has given If You Were Me and Lived in…Norway an honorable mention in the 2013 Choice Awards. If You Were Me and lived in …France won second place. ForeWord Review has nominated If You Were Me and Lived in…France for best in children’s non fiction literature 2013. They will be followed with Kenya, Turkey, India, and Australia. She plans to do Portugal, Greece, and Argentina next year.

 

 

Writing for children has opened up a whole second act for her. While she is still working in her family business, this has enabled her to share her sense of humor as well as love for history and culture with the audience she adores. Roman lives on Long Island with her husband and near her children.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://caroleproman.com/  

 

Blog http://caroleproman.blogspot.ca/  

 

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/CarolePRomanAwardWinningAuthorAndBooks  

 

Twitter https://twitter.com/caroleproman  

 

Pinterest https://www.pinterest.com/caroleproman/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

 

 

 

A Midnight Clear by @JeannieHallAuth Sizzles With #Suspense + #Romance! #bookreview


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Title: A Midnight Clear: A Christmas Novella

Author: Jeannie Hall

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Holiday Romance

 

Book Blurb:

Hannah Barker went from looking forward to her first white Christmas in years to sitting handcuffed and terrified in an FBI interrogation room. They believe her to be a heroin mule for one of the largest and most notoriously successful international drug syndicates of the past decade–they even have pictures of her in Tijuana, proving her involvement. But she’s just an insurance agent from small town Arkansas. She’s never even been out of the country. What in the world is going on?

 

Chief Deputy Ian Velez can’t look forward to the holidays this year. His five-year-old daughter and two-year-old son are missing, kidnapped by his mentally unstable wife. His once idyllic home life has been turned on its head while he works on the single most important case of his career, busting open the Dominguez Cartel. Then he sees their first real lead into the case: Hannah Barker. But this beautiful if unworldly woman comes across as innocent rather than guilty.

 

When Hannah is nearly killed while in the FBI’s custody, Ian saves her in the nick of time, but this alerts him to a mole working within the auspices of the Bureau. Cutting contact with the FBI and his superiors seems his only option. Ian runs with Hannah to a snowy cabin in the middle of the wilderness. While hiding there, sparks fly between the two, surprising them both. Should they try to make the best out of a bad situation? Or is their sanctuary in much more danger than it seems?

 

My Review:

Hannah Barker is looking forward to celebrating Christmas but all that changes when she’s put in handcuffs in front of her insurance co-workers and hauled off for questioning. She’s mistaken for a Mexican drug mule and the FBI has DNA proof. She’s as squeaky clean as a girl scout but no one believes her. No one, except for Chief Deputy Ian.

 

Ian’s gut tells him Hannah is telling the truth. When shots are fired and it appears like the FBI has a mole, he grabs Hannah and heads for his cabin the woods. Now, they’re both on the run and stuck inside a small, deserted cabin. Sparks fly between Ian and Hannah and before you can say yowsy, they explore these feelings.

 

But there’s hidden secrets in Hannah’s past and they’re the ones gunning for her death. Can Ian save her from an executioner’s bullet or will he be too late?

 

Wow! What a fantastic romantic suspense novella. Filled with fleshed-out characters and tons of intense suspense, I read this in one sitting. Hall does an impressive job hiking up the stakes with intrigue, romance and a few steamy sex scenes. It didn’t feel rushed, even though it was a novella, and the characters were well-developed.

 

If you’re a fan of suspense with doses of hot romance, pick up this book today! I look forward to reading more from Jeannie Hall.

 

Favorite Character: Hannah. I liked her immediately and it was enjoyable to be immersed in her head while on the run and trying to out-run the FBI, the Mexican Cartel and her own feelings. Spunky, well-developed and a woman I’d love to be friends with. Go get ‘em, Hannah!

 

Favorite Quote:

“Turned out those fairytales she’d memorized as a kid were complete crap. Her picture-perfect future of floating down the aisle to her soul mate would never come true, so she’d cut her losses. She didn’t need a man, anyway.”

 

My Rating: 5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Midnight-Clear-Christmas-Novella-ebook/dp/B01M74KO07

Smashwords https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/675315

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32789759-a-midnight-clear

 

Author Biography:

Jeannie Hall is a romantic thriller writer who creates dark and intense situations for her characters before giving them their happy ending. She is the author of VIOLATION OF FAITH, book one in the Cult Wife series (available in both print and eBook), and A MIDNIGHT CLEAR, a Christmas novella (available in eBook format).

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://jeanniehallsuspense.com/

Twitter http://twitter.com/JeannieHallAuth

Facebook http://facebook.com/JeannieHallAuthor

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Power of Love and Murder by @brendawhitesid2 #bookreview #TWRP


thepowerofloveandmurder

 

Title: The Power of Love and Murder (The Love and Murder Series Book 4)

Author: Brenda Whiteside

Genre: Romantic Suspense, Suspense

 

Book Blurb:

For thirteen years, Penny Sparks has managed to hide from the political powers who murdered her family. When she unwittingly exposes her true identity, not only is she marked for death, but the people closest to her risk meeting the same fate.

 

Jake Winters is out of rehab and coming to grips with his demons. When he meets his sister’s roommate, Jake believes Penny might be that someone who can help him find life after rock star status…until her secrets blow up his world.

 

With a government agent turned hit man closing in on her, Penny and Jake race to expose the presidential contender behind the murders of her family. Even if they win the race with death, the murder that stands between them could end their hope for a new life.

 

My Review:

Imagine you’re on your way home from high school when your brother sends you a text warning you to not go home. In a flash, you realize your family is in danger and not even the police can help. You flee, change your name to Penny and start a new life in a small town in the desert. Now imagine, missing your extended family so bad you contact your aunt using your roommate’s computer. What harm could it do?

 

Penny’s about to find out just how badly one man wants her dead. He’s already killed every member of her family; she’s the last surviving link. He’s got his eye on the White House and nothing, not even an innocent email, will stand in the way of him being President.

 

Jake is a washed-up rocker, fresh out of rehab, and in need of a place to stay. He crashes at his sister’s and meets the secretive Penny. He’s attracted to her but knows that he’s not in a good place to start a relationship. Sparks fly and he finally gives into his feelings. But all that goes up in flames when tragedy hits.

 

A rogue government agent/hitman tracks down Penny and soon both she and Jake are on the run. Can they outrun him long enough to expose the truth about Penny’s family murderer or will they lose this game of cat and mouse?

 

This was my first book by Brenda Whiteside and I must admit, I enjoyed it. Whiteside pours on the suspense with just enough romance thrown in to allow me to catch my breath. It started out fast, slowed down and then sped up at the end. While there were parts near the end that I felt dragged a bit, I thoroughly enjoyed reading, The Power of Love and Murder. Jake and Penny are well-developed and no insta-love here. Both had to deal with their own demons, sometimes alone and sometimes together, which I found realistic. Jake’s reactions to Penny’s secrets were honest and even at times, humorous.

 

If you’re a fan of romantic suspense, this is a must read. If you’re a fan of suspense and/or political thrillers, you’ll love it! I look forward to reading more from Brenda Whiteside.

 

Favorite Character: Jake. At the beginning, I wasn’t sure what to make of him. Was he going to be the bad guy or hero? I loved his personal growth and how he dealt with all that Penny threw at him. They’re a real couple, both filled with insecurities and demons chasing them, yet when push comes to shove, Jake is determined to show Penny he’s the man for her and nothing can keep them apart, not even murder.

 

Favorite Quote: “Penny, I know how much she meant to you.” How much she meant to both of them. He wanted to hold her, share their loss. “I’m not leaving you.”

 

My Rating:  4.5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Power-Love-Murder-Book-ebook/dp/B01M3YVO4H/

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32884499-the-power-of-love-and-murder

 

brenda-whiteside

Author Biography:

Convinced she was born to be an artist, Brenda never took her love of writing seriously. And then one day, sometime after college, after marrying a man doing a stint in the army, and after the birth of her son, she found more satisfaction filling a blank page with words than an empty canvas with color.

 

Brenda and her husband are gypsies at heart having lived in six states and two countries. Currently, they split their time between the prairie in Northern Arizona and the RV life. At home or in the RV, she spends most of her time writing stories of discovery and love entangled with suspense.

 

Social Media Links:

Visit Brenda at www.brendawhiteside.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/BrendaWhitesideAuthor

Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/brendawhitesid2

She blogs on the 9th and 24th of every month at http://rosesofprose.blogspot.com

She blogs about prairie life on her personal blog http://brendawhiteside.blogspot.com/

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Bette and the Beast by Liza Penn #BookReview + #BlogTour! @XpressoTours #romance


Bette & the Beast
Liza Penn
(Hotel Ever After, #1)
Publication date: September 13th 2016
Genres: New Adult, Romance

Bette owns Fairhaven’s only bookstore…but only barely. She’s struggling with bills, but she refuses to sell to the hotel mogul Richard Dickson because he only wants to tear down the beloved store and replace it with a hotel. Can these two find a compromise and save the bookstore?

 

My Review:

Bette is the owner of an independent bookstore in the small town of Fairhaven. Hotel mogul Richard Dickson wants to buy it but Bette refuses. She knows that he’s only going to tear it down to build a monstrous hotel instead. Her bookstore is more than a business; it’s a part of her. But as the bills pile up and her father pressures her to sell, she caves in. Bette’s in for a surprise when she discovers that Richard is not the cold-hearted man she assumes he is. Will she let him in or will they be worlds apart?

I loved this romance and read it in one sitting. Based on classic fairy tales, Liza Penn’s brand new series (Hotel Ever After) is sexy, romantic, full of alpha men and women, and I, for one, want to stay at this charming hotel. I connected with Bette immediately and the chemistry between Bette and Richard is electric! I was sad when I read the last page and will be reading this whole series.

If you’re looking for a sexy romance to curl up to on a winter night, 1-click this right now! Highly recommend and look forward to reading the rest of the series.

My Rating: 5+ stars

Goodreads / Amazon

 

Author Bio:

 

Liza Penn is the pseudonym of an author living with her family in the piedmont of the Carolinas. She writes the Hotel Ever After books for fun and values her privacy.

 

Website / Goodreads / Facebook


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Guardian of the Way by @DianeMoatAuthor Grabs You From the First Page #bookreview #fantasy #YA


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Title: Guardian of the Way

Author: Diane Moat

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult

 

Book Blurb:

It’s been two centuries since someone murdered the last Guardian of the Way, closing off this world from the many realms of magic and fae.

 

Cassiopeia “Cass” Wilson is an eighteen-year-old living on her own for the first time. The only magic she’s interested in is the kind that will help her pay the bills on time. Little does she know that a trip to the hospital after a fainting spell will change her life forever.

 

Cass soon learns she may be fae, and everything points to her being the next Guardian of the Way. There’s just one problem: whoever—or whatever—killed the last Guardian wants Cass dead too.

 

Cass quickly runs into problems, and an attack by djinn is just the first. But Cass joins forces with a wrath daemon, were-creatures, and fae on a quest to reach the Lighthouse—the site of the Way.

 

Cass soon learns about wizards desperate to keep the Way closed to serve their dark purposes, and she comes to a crossroads: will she take the test to become the new Guardian and leave her normal life behind? Or will the Way remain closed to all who need it?

 

My Review:

Imagine everything you know about the world you live in is an illusion. Now imagine all those stories about wizards, werewolves, fae, dijin and otherworldly creatures are true and their very survival lies in your hands. Welcome to Guardian of the Way.

 

Eighteen-year-old Cass, grew up an orphan and never quite fit in, is finally living on her own. She has her best friends and her own apartment. Life’s pretty good, that is until a night out with her girlfriends lands her in the hospital. The doctor can’t explain her fainting spells or the constant pain in her arm. It’s only when he introduces her to an alternative medicine “doctor” that Cass’ life is spun out of control.

 

“We have to get you to the Lighthouse,” a few strangers tell her. They tell her a little bit at a time as they dodge one attack after another. A group of a wrath demon, fae, werewolves and more protect her from those hell-bent on killing her before she comes into her real identity: Guardian of the Way. Along the way, she will be tested and at the end, she will need to make a choice. Will she sacrifice her future to save millions or is it all too much for her?

 

I’m a huge fan of fantasy and I LOVED this book! Filled with interesting characters and conflict galore, Guardian of the Way is a fantasy gem in the same vein as Sarah J. Maas and Philip Pullman.

 

Moat creates a realistic heroine in Cass and I could totally relate to her. There are times when it’s all too much for her and yet, after contemplation, she finds the strength to continue. Cass is a role model for young women everywhere and she’s relatable.

 

My favorite scenes are between Cass and the werewolves. They have a bond that’s unbreakable and it’s heart-wrenching at moments.

 

If you’re looking for a good book to escape to, this is it! Don’t be deterred by the young adult rating… this well-written gem is perfect for readers of both teen and adult. It has something for everyone (action, otherworldly creatures, magical realism, romance, destiny, coming of age). A must read and I highly recommend!

 

Favorite Character: It’s a toss-up between Cass, Aeshma and Malon. Each of these characters bring a depth to the story and I grew attached to them the more I read. Both Aeshma and Malon help Cass come into her own. While Aeshma is a demon and sparks fly between him and Cass, Malon is like her very own Yoda (only more helpful and not so cryptic).

 

Favorite Quote: “Plus, something in her soul wanted all of this to be true. She had been lost her whole life, never having answers to whom she was or why she was without a family.” – Cass

 

My Rating:  5+ stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon https://www.amazon.com/Guardian-Way-Diane-Moat-ebook/dp/B01MFD7KNC

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32795260-guardian-of-the-way?from_search=true

 

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Author Biography:

When not creating fantastical worlds of young adult fiction, Diane Moat spends her time in Tennessee as an animal rescuer and nurse. Her various rescue dogs often assist her in the creative process.

 

Social Media Links:

Facebook https://www.facebook.com/DianeMoatAuthor/

Website http://www.dianemoatauthor.com/

Twitter @DianeMoatAuthor

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

Living in Italy: The Real Deal by Stef Smulders @italie_verhalen #bookreview #travel


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Title: Living in Italy: The Real Deal – How to Survive the Good Life

Author: Stef Smulders

Genre: Travel Writing, Bed & Breakfast Travel Reference

 

Book Blurb:

#1 in Bed & Breakfast Travel Reference (Amazon US Bestseller)

 

In 2008 Stef Smulders, his partner Nico and their dog Saar emigrated to Italy to start a new life and set up their B&B Villa I Due Padroni. They sold their home, left their friends and family behind and took a leap into the unknown. Now Stef shares his experiences in a collection of witty short stories. The book treats the trials and tribulations of an emigration: what it was like to buy and renovate a house, to import a car, to gain residency, and much more.

 

The reader is introduced to a full range of Italian characters, from the trustworthy to the rogue, from the gentle to the shameless, flesh and blood Italians. Some are stereotype, others unexpectedly original. Yet they never fail to amuse and entertain.

 

My Review:

Ever since I was fifteen years old, I’ve been in love with all things Italy. At one time, I wanted to emigrate there and live like the Italians do. Authors like Frances Mayes and Jan Morris fed my heart’s desire and now I can add Stef Smulders to the list of my favorite ex-pat authors.

 

In 2008, Stef and his husband, Nico, decided to take the plunge and emigrate to Northern Italy and open a bed and breakfast. Although they did their research back in the Netherlands, it’s never as easy as all that. Stef records their journey. The result: a delightful and entertaining read.

 

From finding a place to live to buying and renovating a property (to turn into a B&B), Stef doesn’t hold back which brings authenticity to this memoir. His take on their Italian real estate agent had me grabbing my sides from laughing so hard. The continual uphill battles Stef and Nico faced were realistic and I now understand how difficult it must be to emigrate and start a business as a foreigner in Italy. Through it all, though, Stef kept his humor and the end-result is breath-takingly beautiful.

 

This is a translation from Dutch and I must say, I am thoroughly impressed. You’d think Stef was British and fluent in English.

 

If you love all things Italy and/or thinking of visiting, I highly recommend this book. If you’re looking for an escape from winter weather, pick up this book right now!

 

Thank you to Stef Smulders for giving me a copy in the hopes that I’d review it.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Living-Italy-Real-Deal-Survive/dp/1507162960

 

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Living-Italy-Real-Deal-Survive/dp/1507162960

 

Barnes and Noble http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/living-in-italy-stef-smulders/1124857195

 

Kobo https://www.kobo.com/ca/nl/ebook/living-in-italy-the-real-deal-how-to-survive-the-good-life

 

Apple https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1166022216

 

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/32572055-living-in-italy

 

Author Biography:

Stef Smulders and his husband Nico are two adventurous Dutch men who decided to start a new life in Italy. In 2008 they made the big move with their dog Saar and set up Bed and Breakfast Villa I Due Padroni in the beautiful wine region of the Oltrepò Pavese to the south of Milan. In 2014 Stef published his first collection of amusing short stories (in Dutch) about daily life among the Italians, entitled “Italiaanse Toestanden – Leven en overleven in Italie”. It was so well received that he published a follow-up volume of humorous anecdotes in 2016. The third volume is under preparation, expected to be in press by spring 2017. “Living in Italy: the Real Deal” is the translation into English of the first volume.

 

Social Media Links:

Website http://www.duepadroni.it/

Twitter https://twitter.com/italie_verhalen

LinkedIn https://www.linkedin.com/in/milanapp

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N

The Du Lac Devil by @MaryAnneYarde is a Must-Read! #bookreview #HistoricalFantasy


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Title: The Du Lac Devil (Book 2 of The Du Lac Chronicles)

Author: Mary Anne Yarde

Genre: Historical Fantasy, Arthurian, Historical Romance

 

Book Blurb:

War is coming to Saxon Briton.

 

As one kingdom after another falls to the savage might of the High King, Cerdic of Wessex, only one family dares to stand up to him — The Du Lacs.

 

Budic and Alden Du Lac are barely speaking to each other, and Merton is a mercenary, fighting for the highest bidder. If Wessex hears of the brothers’ discord, then all is lost.

 

Fate brings Merton du Lac back to the ancestral lands of his forefathers, and he finds his country on the brink of civil war. But there is worse to come, for his father’s old enemy has infiltrated the court of Benwick. Now, more than ever, the Du Lac must come together to save the kingdom and themselves.

 

Can old rivalries and resentments be overcome in time to stop a war?

 

My Review:

Think you know what really happened between King Arthur Pendragon and Sir Lancelot Du Lac? This is the real story… or at least what Mary Anne Yarde envisions it.

 

This is book two in The Du Lac Chronicles series and while it is a standalone (thanks to Yarde’s excellent backstory abilities), I highly recommend you read book one first.

 

Merton Du Lac is one of Lancelot’s sons and while he is the youngest of his brothers, his soul is weighed down by responsibility. To ease his guilt of his brother Alden’s torture by the hand of King Wessex, Merton goes off to war, wherever he can find it. Being a mercenary to the highest bidder is good money but Merton is caught between two rival armies who want Merton’s head on a spike when he gets word of the sudden death of his brother’s wife and their sole heir.

 

Merton runs into Alden and reunites with Budic as well. The Du Lac brothers are all together and this can only mean one thing: trouble. Merton is the first to sniff out the trap but before he can escape, Alton is captured and thrown in the dungeon. He can’t leave his brother and must figure out a way to free him before the noose tightens around Merton’s neck.

 

Meanwhile, Merton reunites with his deceased brother’s widow, Amandine. She’s married once again to a droll Lord in Budic’s court. A slow-burning romance between Merton and Amandine, even though Merton tries his best to squelch it. He pushes her away and confesses all his dark deeds in the hopes she’ll reject him. Instead, her pure love for him purifies his heart and a small seed of hope grows in his soul. Can she truly love him?

 

A mysterious enemy is hell-bent on eliminating all the Du Lacs and when it’s finally revealed, no one is safe. War comes to Briton and Lancelot’s sons must work together to escape death and destruction… or is it too late?

 

The Du Lac Devil is darker than book one yet so much better. Yarde has done her research and she paints an accurate portrayal of sixth century Briton. Her descriptions of everyday life is spot-on, from the layout to the castle to torture to the Church to how women are treated.

 

The best parts of this book are the background of Lancelot Du Lac and Arthur Pendragon. Yarde weaves an intoxicating tale blending history with folklore.

 

This is why I’m a fan of historical fiction. I get to imagine what could’ve been and immerse myself into a particular fascinating time period.

 

If you’re a fan of Game of Thrones and/or The Vikings, you’ll love the back-stabbing/political jockeying in The Du Lac Devil. You’ll also love Josephine and Philippe.

 

I wait with bated breath for the next book in the series. I need to know what happens next!

 

Favorite Character:

Merton. I love rooting for the misunderstood often brooding underdog character. There were times when I didn’t like what the author was putting him through but I understand now why she did it. Merton is a tortured soul and yet when he falls in love with a pure soul, we catch a glimpse of the knight beneath the devil inside Merton.

 

Favorite Quote:

“An heir to the throne is hardly innocent.” He made himself smile, and he held his hand out towards her.

 

My Rating:  5 stars

 

Buy it now:

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Du-Lac-Devil-Book-Chronicles-ebook/dp/B01N0FW1RU

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/Du-Lac-Devil-Book-Chronicles-ebook/dp/B01N0FW1RU

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/33014836-the-du-lac-devil

 

Mary Anne Yarde Head Shot

 

Author Biography:

Born in Bath, England, Mary Anne Yarde grew up in the southwest of England, surrounded and influenced by centuries of history and mythology. Glastonbury—the fabled Isle of Avalon—was a mere fifteen-minute drive from her home, and tales of King Arthur and his knights were part of her childhood.

 

At nineteen, Yarde married her childhood sweetheart and began a bachelor of arts in history at Cardiff University, only to have her studies interrupted by the arrival of her first child. She would later return to higher education, studying equine science at Warwickshire College. Horses and history remain two of her major passions.

 

Yarde keeps busy raising four children and helping run a successful family business. She has many skills but has never mastered cooking—so if you ever drop by, she (and her family) would appreciate some tasty treats or a meal out!

 

Social Media Links:

Blog

http://maryanneyarde.blogspot.co.uk/

Facebook

https://www.facebook.com/maryanneyarde/

Twitter

https://twitter.com/maryanneyarde

Goodreads

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/29243164-the-du-lac-chronicles

 

Reviewed by: Mrs. N